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BlueDog
06-06-2009, 05:03 PM
OK... so my tent has lost its "new tent smell" and I'm wonder what people do to clean them up? Can a tent be thrown in the washing machine? (I have a front loading washer that will do delicate cycle.)

Any advice?

Charlie
06-06-2009, 06:36 PM
get a can of "new tent smell air freshener" :eek: at a camping store :D

Brad
06-06-2009, 07:16 PM
OK... so my tent has lost its "new tent smell" and I'm wonder what people do to clean them up? Can a tent be thrown in the washing machine? (I have a front loading washer that will do delicate cycle.)

Any advice?
I would be concerned about the waterproofing on the tent after that type of washing. There is a spray conditioner for boat covers to put the waterproofing back in them. that might work for a tent - or a camping store might have a similar product.

Oh, there are boat cover cleaners that spray on and you use a stiff brush. Might work for a tent.

mtruman
06-06-2009, 07:32 PM
http://www.nikwax.com/en-gb/activity/index.php?activity=OUTDOORS&item=EQUIPMENTMaybe with Nikwash and Nikwax waterproofer. If it works for rain jackets it would seem that it would work for a tent. Have to admit I've never heard of anyone putting a tent in the washer though...

Edit: Guess I could have looked at this first. Here's the page on Nikwax cleaning and treatment of tents. I love this stuff for my raingear and boots.

Steve M
06-07-2009, 07:06 AM
I thought tents just smelled like tents. I guess I never payed much attention to the new smell as opposed to a used smell.

Bill O
06-07-2009, 11:02 AM
What about setting it up and airing it out in a dry location (out of the sun)?

If you do wash it make sure everything is zipped shut. I'd be most worried about the delicate screen doors and windows. I think people make arguments for and against the washing machine. Front-end load on delicate cycle is obviously best.

BlueDog
06-07-2009, 11:23 AM
Well... I generally try to air it out upon return from a trip. However, in Yosemite, I had my hiking buddy sharing the two-person tent (to save weight for the 4 days, vs carrying individual tents). The nights got cool and the rain fly would be wet in the morning from condensation. Without much time to dry it in the morning, it'd get packed up wet. After the last day, it spent two days packed up wet (drive back to San Fran, stay the night, then a day flying back home, work the next day, etc). So, by now its got a little mildew on it.

Based on Mark's link, I found a Tech Wash product that is made for washing tents (and other tech gear of that type). I'll head down to my local EMS this afternoon to pick it up and try it out. Will report back and let you know how it works.

http://www.nikwax.com/cmsdata/Products/image1_18_en-gb.jpg

iceclimber
06-07-2009, 11:34 AM
I've always read that using a mild dish detergent while gently washing the tent while it is set up works.

Bill O
06-07-2009, 11:37 AM
This is what hotel rooms are for. Drying out after a trip to Mount Adams (the one in Washington state).

http://easternlight.net/photos/wash0009.jpg

mtruman
06-07-2009, 12:24 PM
Based on Mark's link, I found a Tech Wash product that is made for washing tents (and other tech gear of that type). I'll head down to my local EMS this afternoon to pick it up and try it out. Will report back and let you know how it works.


This is the stuff I've used in the past on my rain gear. Works great for that. Follow it up with the TX Direct Wash-in Waterproofing. This works great for Gortex and other raingear. Seems like it should work for a tent as well but they don't list it that way on the site.

http://www.nikwax.com/cmsdata/Products/image1_25_en-us.jpg

Charlie
06-07-2009, 01:56 PM
This is the stuff I've used in the past on my rain gear. Works great for that. Follow it up with the TX Direct Wash-in Waterproofing. This works great for Gortex and other raingear. Seems like it should work for a tent as well but they don't list it that way on the site.

http://www.nikwax.com/cmsdata/Products/image1_25_en-us.jpg

marl and others i have used this for years and it is good stuff

BlueDog
06-14-2009, 04:28 PM
Update:

Picked up a bottle of the TechWash at EMS for $8. Threw the tent, rain fly and the footprint in the front loading washer with just three cap fulls of the wash. Set to handwash/delicates cycle in warm/cool water. Then 90 min in the dryer on Air Only setting. Tent looks and smells like new!